"We are really pleased to have Lance Thompson join our staff," Saban said. "He's an excellent teacher and has had a tremendous amount of success as a recruiter at Georgia Tech as well as in the SEC at Alabama. It's difficult to replace a good coach like Pete Jenkins, but we feel we have found an excellent fit with Lance Thompson."
The 2001 season was Thompson's 12th at Georgia Tech. He was with the Yellow Jackets for eleven years, 1988-1998, before moving over to the Alabama staff as a defensive line coach for the last two years of the Mike Dubose era. After DuBose dismissal, Thompson returned to Georgia Tech as the tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator.
In his first stint with Georgia Tech, Thompson worked with three different positions. He coached the Yellow Jackets defensive line in 1998, the defensive ends in 1996-97 and the tight ends in 1995. All-Atlantic Coast Conference defensive ends Ralph Hughes (1997) and Jesse Tarplin (1998) earned their honors under Thompson's guidance.
Thompson also served as Tech's recruiting coordinator all four years.
Prior to becoming a position coach, Thompson spent three years (1992-94) as Georgia Tech's Director of Football Operations. Before handling that administrative role, he served four seasons as a volunteer coach and graduate assistant working with the Yellow Jackets defense under then-defensive coordinator George O'Leary.
Thompson was not retained at Georgia Tech when Chan Gailey was hired to replace O'Leary in December. O'Leary was hired at Notre Dame and then resigned when it was learned that his resume included factual errors related to his football and educational background.
Thompson, 36, started four years at outside linebacker for The Citadel, where he earned honorable mention all-Southern Conference honors. He is a 1987 honor graduate of the military academy with a bachelor's degree in mathematics and education.
A native of Riverdale, Ga., he is married to the former Stacy Cambron of Henderson, Ky., and the couple has three daughters.
The Lance Thompson File
Full Name: James Lance Thompson
Hometown: Riverdale, Ga.
Birthdate: June 4, 1964
Alma Mater: The Citadel (1987)
Playing Experience: Outside linebackers at The Citadel (four-year letter winner)
1988-91 Georgia Tech (1988-89, graduate assistant; 1990-91, volunteer coach)
1992-94 Georgia Tech Director of Football Operations
1995-98 Georgia Tech (1995, tight ends/recruiting coordinator; 1996-97, defensive ends/recruiting coordinator; 1998 defensive line/recruiting coordinator)
1999-00 Alabama (defensive line)
2001 Georgia Tech (defensive line/recruiting coordinator)
2002 LSU (defensive line)